Moving to Alaska – Day 9.

Happy Birthday Dad. We packed it up from Babine Lake and thought that we would really get started on our adventure. Our first stop was a place we saw First Nations using a dipnet to catch fish.

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It was time to get onto the Cassiar highway. This is where we turned north from Kitwanga and headed in towards the Yukon Territory. There are very few towns, no cell phone service, no wifi, and gas stations are only open during the day.

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This is one of the places where we saw black bears close to the road.

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There were lots of time where we didn’t see another person, but lots of beautiful scenery.

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Don’t worry, we were totally safe. Notice the bear spray on the belt loop at all times. We also found tall Fireweed. I don’t remember ever seeing Fireweed, but it is everywhere as you go north.

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There are different accommodation options all along the way. We found “resorts” for $150 a night, but opted for the free Bonus Lake Forest Recreation Site.

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I can’t get over how great these recreation sites can be. We are steps from Bonus Lake (which has many trout eager to take a fly).

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There is a composting toilet, picnic tables, and fire rings. There are only 3 campsites. When we arrived we were alone. It was starting to rain, so we set up our tent quickly. I met a nice dutch guy who stopped with his truck, camper, and three kids just to make coffee. He says that he stays in recreation sites 6 days a week while on vacation. He left after chatting for a while. He was headed to Smithers to stock up on Dutch things. He said that 1/3 of the town is of Dutch heritage so there are shops that sell Dutch candies and things imported from the Netherlands that remind him of his childhood.

The weather got worse and a nice Canadian couple showed up and sat in the pouring rain with us. They had a camper, but had a couple of beers at our table and discussed life. It was interesting to meet all kinds of people on this trip. The man was a hunter. Well he shot things. He told us stories of shooting animals that he never intended to eat that he would get a permit for after killing it and report it even after that. Seemed a bit like a “if it has eyes it dies” kind of hunter. He lived in his camper as he worked construction for things like oil and gas pipelines. He would be away from home for months at a time chasing work. Rough life up here.

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November 7th – Rivers.

Big ones, small ones,  fast ones, slow ones. I was having a discussion with someone today that reminded me how much I love water. We were talking about how water can be calming and lower your heart rate. It got me thinking about how many rivers I have seen in my life. I am very lucky to have experienced so many of them.

River!

Bangkok.

Paris

Paris.

Brazil

Brazil before runoff.

Brasil

Brazil after runoff.

Germany

Northern Germany.

Prague

Prague

NZ

New Zealand.

Now this last picture is one of my favorite rivers in the world. This is where I caught my first big trout on a dry fly. On a cicada. During an amazingly clear, beautiful, summer day in New Zealand.

Thank you to everyone that has helped me share these experiences on the river. Fishy Steve, you ruined me.

Gold Pan Creek

So, Derek and I hit up Gold Pan Creek. Turns out the road ends rather abruptly. There were lots of eager fish. The meth heads didn’t wake up until later in the day, so we were alone most of the time.

No really, the road ends rather suddenly.

It was a really hard day.

The river was full of treacherous crossings.

Christo shouldn’t cover the river.

Ask any 6th grader about plants and they will probably mention photosynthesis. We all remember that, right? Carbon dioxide into sugar for energy using sunlight. I think. The point is that the plants need the sunlight. Living in Seattle gives me a first hand experience of what happens when you take sunlight away.

I love fly fishing. I love learning about what fish eat and why. I don’t agree that Christo can cover a river in the name of art.

This is just stupid.